The Great Divorce: Ethan Van Sciver Parts Ways with Comicsgate

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It's Over

For the better part of the last year, the face and voice of Comicsgate has been Ethan Van Sciver, whose YouTube channel "ComicArtistPro Secrets" garnered massive audiences for livestreams (with over 80,000 subscribers) and became, by default and by name, Comicsgate Live.

For many in the independent publishing community, it was a golden ticket. Invitations onto Ethan's show could almost guarantee a five-figure boost in crowdfunding of works in progress. Over time, Ethan's followers began to jokingly call him Caesar, recognizing him as not just a leader in Comicsgate, but perhaps as the leader of the movement, which had pre-existed his involvement due to the efforts of Richard C. Meyer and Captain Cummings before him.

But for every Caesar, there is a Brutus, and we all know how that story ends.

Infighting was inevitable. Relationships became strained. Betrayals were solicited.

The writing was on the wall. Comicsgate was schisming.

And so, like Martin Luther hammering his 95 theses to the door of the Wittenburg chapel, Ethan Van Sciver took to his vaunted YouTube channel and made a proclamation: Comicsgate Live... was dead!

It seemed a deathblow. However, it may be just the beginning of something larger. Ethan was clear that he still believed in the consumer-based tenets that Comicsgate claims forms their reason for existence. However, by divorcing himself from the movement, he frees it up to make decisions that he, personally, doesn't agree with. So in a way, it is a split after all, a schism of Comicsgate and Comicsgate Reformed.

What this will mean for future crowdfunding projects and independent creators involved in the movement is yet to be seen. The movement is experiencing several simultaneous shake-ups, from Meyer's tortious interference lawsuit against Mark Waid to the abrupt cancellation of a highly anticipated project over creative, political, and philosophical differences.

Now we will see which set of philosophies will win in the market of ideas: Fundamentalist Comicsgate, or the Church of Van Sciver.